I arrived to the lodge for dinner. James, my host, took me on the deck. In a lovely, barely susceptible English accent he said, “Here, let me adjust the telescope. Jupiter is quite bright tonight – you can see the planet and most of its moons.” He stepped aside and motioned for me to look. I was speechless at the sight before me. Even without the telescope, the evening sky left me dumbstruck. Layers upon layers of stars twinkled brightly in the sky. The Milky Way cast an opaque net over the black expanse.
Dinner was dish after dish of scrumptious flavors presented before me. Bobotie, a traditional Afrikaans dish, was the main course. Sweet pumpkin and creamy spinach accompanied it. Cilla brought me tipsy tart for dessert. As I was eating, James brought me a glass of fresh strawberry sorbet resting on a plate surrounded by delicate rose petals. The beauty of it stunned me. The deep, crystal clear red of the sorbet contrasted with the delicate pink of the petals. I ate each bite slowly, savoring, peering out over the expanse of the valley.
We gathered on the couch for an after dinner drink. As we were sipping and chatting, James enthusiastically, though silently, insisted we come to the deck. There, just feet away, four wild zebras were grazing. The five of us humans stood still. We watched in silence as the zebras bumped each other, grazed, and brayed, oblivious to our wonderment.